Dracula By Bram Stoker (Book, Summary, Book Review, Online Reading, Download, PDF)

    Abdulaziz Sobh

    0/5 stars (0 votes)


    (Book, Summary, Book Review, Online Reading, Download, PDF)

    Author Bram Stoker
    Country United Kingdom
    Language English
    Genre HorrorGothic
    Publisher Archibald Constable and Company (UK)
    Publication date
    26 May 1897

    Dracula is an 1897 Gothic horror novel by Irish author Bram Stoker. It introduced Count Dracula and established many conventions of subsequent vampire fantasy.The novel tells the story of Dracula's attempt to move from Transylvania to England so that he may find new blood and spread the undead curse, and of the battle between Dracula and a small group of men and a woman led by Professor Abraham Van Helsing.
    Dracula has been assigned to many literary genres including vampire literature, horror fiction, the gothic novel, and invasion literature. The novel has spawned numerous theatrical, film, and television interpretations.

    A Summary: The story is told in epistolary format, as a series of letters, diary entries, newspaper articles, and ships' log entries, whose narrators are the novel's protagonists, and occasionally supplemented with newspaper clippings relating events not directly witnessed. The events portrayed in the novel take place chronologically and largely in England and Transylvania during the 1890s and all transpire within the same year between 3 May and 6 November. A short note is located at the end of the final chapter written 7 years after the events outlined in the novel.The tale begins with Jonathan Harker, a newly qualified English solicitor, visiting Count Dracula in the Carpathian Mountains on the border of Transylvania, Bukovina, and Moldavia, to provide legal support for a real estate transaction overseen by Harker's employer, Mr. Peter Hawkins of Exeter. At first, enticed by Dracula's gracious manners, Harker soon realizes that he is Dracula's prisoner. Wandering the Count's castle against Dracula's admonition, Harker encounters three female vampires, called "the sisters", from whom he is rescued by Dracula. Harker soon realizes that Dracula himself is also a vampire. After the preparations are made, Dracula leaves Transylvania and abandons Harker to the sisters. Harker barely escapes from the castle with his life.Dracula boards a Russian ship, the Demeter, taking along with him boxes of Transylvanian soil, which he required in order to regain his strength. Not long afterward, the ship having weighed anchor at Varna runs aground on the shores of Whitby on the east coast of England. The captain's log narrates the gradual disappearance of the entire crew, until the captain alone remained, himself bound to the helm to maintain course. An animal resembling "a large dog" is seen leaping ashore. The ship's cargo is described as silver sand and 50 boxes of "mold", or earth, from Transylvania. It is later learned that Dracula successfully purchased multiple estates under the alias 'Count De Ville' throughout London and devised to distribute the 50 boxes to each of them utilizing transportation services as well as moving them himself. He does this to secure for himself "lairs" and the 50 boxes of the earth would be used as his graves which would grant safety and rest during times of feeding and replenishing his strength.Harker's fiancée, Mina Murray, is staying with her friend Lucy Westenra, who is holidaying in Whitby. Lucy receives three marriage proposals from Dr. John Seward, Quincey Morris, and Arthur Holmwood (the son of Lord Godalming who later obtains the title himself[2]). Lucy accepts Holmwood's proposal while turning down Seward and Morris, but all remain friends. Dracula communicates with Seward's patient, Renfield, an insane man who wishes to consume insects, spiders, birds, and rats to absorb their "life force". Renfield is able to detect Dracula's presence and supplies clues accordingly.It soon becomes indirectly that Dracula stalks Lucy. As time passes, he begins to suffer episodes of sleepwalking and dementia, as Mina testifies. When Lucy begins to be consumed suspiciously, Seward invites his former teacher, Abraham Van Helsing, who immediately determines the true cause of Lucy's condition. He refuses to reveal it but diagnoses it with acute loss of blood. Van Helsing prescribes numerous blood transfusions to which he, Seward, Quincey, and Arthur contribute over time. Van Helsing also prescribes garlic flowers to place in her entire room and weaves a necklace of withered garlic flowers for her to use. However, she continues to burn out, seeming to lose blood every night. While the two doctors are absent, Lucy and her mother are attacked by a wolf and Mrs. Westenra, who has a heart disease, dies of fear. Van Helsing tries to protect her with garlic but fate frustrates him every night, whether Lucy's mother removes the garlic from her room or Lucy does it in her restless sleep. The doctors found two small marks on the neck, which Dr. Seward does not understand. After Lucy dies, Van Helsing places a golden crucifix over his mouth, ostensibly to delay or prevent Lucy's vampire conversion. Destiny conspires against him again when Van Helsing finds the crucifix in the hands of one of the servants who stole it from Lucy's corpse.After Lucy's death and burial, the newspapers report that a "beautiful lady" harassed the children at night (ie, "beautiful lady"). Van Helsing, knowing that Lucy became a vampire, relies on Seward, Lord Godalming and Morris. The suitors and Van Helsing track her down and, after a confrontation with her, they stab her heart, decapitate her and fill her mouth with garlic. Around the same time, Jonathan Harker arrives from Budapest, where Mina marries him after his escape, and he and Mina join the campaign against Dracula.Vampire hunters stay at Dr. Seward's residence, hold nightly meetings and provide reports based on each of their various tasks. Mina discovers that each of her magazines and letters collectively contains clues on which they can trace it. It is responsible for collecting them, researching newspaper clippings, adjusting the most relevant entries in chronological order and writing copies to distribute to each of the parties they will study. Jonathan Harker tracks the shipments of tombstones in boxes and the properties that Dracula has purchased to store them. Van Helsing carries out an investigation together with Dr. Seward to analyze the behavior of his patient Renfield, who, according to them, is directly influenced by Dracula. They also investigate historical events, folklore and superstitions of diverse cultures to understand the powers and weaknesses of Dracula. Van Helsing also establishes a criminal profile in Dracula in order to better understand his actions and predict his movements. Arthur Holmwood's fortune helps finance the entire operation and expenses. As they discover the various properties that Dracula had bought, the male protagonists come together to attack each property and face Dracula several times. As they discover each of the tombs in boxes scattered throughout London, they open them to place and seal wafers of sacramental bread inside. This action makes the boxes of the earth completely useless for Dracula since he cannot open them, enter them or transport them.After Dracula learns of the group's conspiracy against him, he attacks Mina three times and gives Mina his own blood to control. This curses Mina with vampirism and changes her, but does not make her completely vampire. Van Helsing tries to bless Mina through prayer and placing a sacrament wafer on his forehead, but on contact, he burns it and leaves a miserable scar. Under this curse, Mina oscillates from consciousness to a semi-trance during which she perceives the surroundings and actions of Dracula. Van Helsing can use hypnotism twice a day, at dawn and dusk, to put her in this trance and follow Dracula's movements. Mina, fearful of Dracula's bond with her, urges the team not to tell her plans for fear that Dracula will listen. After the protagonists discover and sterilize 49 boxes found throughout their lairs in London, they learn that Dracula has fled with the missing 50th box to his castle in Transylvania. They chase him under Mina's guidance. They separated into teams once they arrived in Europe; Van Helsing and Mina join to locate Dracula's castle while the others try to ambush the boat that Dracula is using to get to his house. Van Helsing smoothes the castle and destroys the vampire "sisters". Upon discovering Dracula being transported by gypsies, the three teams converge and attack the caravan that transports Dracula in the 50th space on Earth. After sending many gypsies who had sworn to protect the earl, Harker sheared Dracula by the throat with a Kukri knife, while Quincey mortally wounded stabbed the Earl in the heart with a Bowie knife. Dracula turns to dust, and Mina frees herself from her curse of vampirism when the scar on her forehead disappears. Soon after, Quincey dies of his wounds.The book closes with a note left by Jonathan Harker seven years after the events of the novel, which details his married life with Mina and the birth of his son, whom they name after the four members of the party, but addresses as "Quincey". Quincey is represented sitting on Van Helsing's knee while they relate his adventure. Seward and Arthur have each married.Final eliminated small section was removed from a draft of the last chapter, in which Dracula's castle collapses when he dies, hiding the fact that the vampires were once there. When we looked, there was a terrible convulsion of the earth, so that we seemed to rock with and there and fell on our knees. At the same moment, with a roar that seemed to shake the skies, the entire castle and rock and even the hill on which it rose seemed to rise in the air and scattered into fragments as a powerful cloud of black and yellow smoke rose from the volume. in rolling grandeur, it was shot upwards with inconceivable speed.Then there was a stillness in nature when the echoes of that thunderous report seemed to come as the hollow boom of thunder: the long-reverberating roar that seems as if the floors of heaven shudder. Then, in a mighty ruin that fell from where they came, the fragments that had been thrown into the sky in the cataclysm came out.From where we stood it seemed as if the explosion of a ferocious volcano had satisfied the need of nature and that the castle and the structure of the hill had sunk back into the void. We were so dismayed by the brusqueness and greatness that we forget to think of ourselves.- Deleted extract from the original manuscript of Dracula

    Book Club Questions


    Commenting only available for logged in users